Solar Car Challenge for High Schoolers

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The Solar Car Challenge has been engaging high school students interested in engineering and alternative energy since 1993. This year, the race started on the Texas Motor Speedway and has traveled through New Mexico and Arizona; the event will end in Los Angeles’ Exposition Park next Tuesday.

You can check if your high school is participating and follow the teams’ ranking thus far  here .

Although building a solar powered car seems like a tall order, it’s not impossible if you’re determined. The Winston Solar site explains that it takes about $12,000 to build a solar powered car and that most students who attempt this start fundraising in advance. Sponsors include small businesses, corporations and community organizations.

Do you think your idea can become the next Tesla? Consider competing in the 2014 Solar Car Challenge.

To participate in next year’s event, you can start now by researching past Solar Car Challenges and maybe even getting some inspiration from Stanford’s Solar Car Project . Of course, you’re going to need a license if you’re going to drive, so why not research our all-online teen drivers ed course ?

Applications are accepted as of September 1st and the event’s coordinator, Dr. Mark Lehman recommends applying early to give yourself lots of time to fundraise and learn as much as possible. You can email  for more information. 

Below are photos of students racing and tinkering with their solar cars in years past. Next year, it could be you!

students fix solar car


Student drives on Texas Motor Speedway


Solar Car Challenge Teams 2012


Maintenance on Solar Car on Texas Motor Speedway


Driving Solar Car on the Texas Motor Speedway